Eddie Hearn: Boxing Promoter turned viral sensation

To boxing fans around the world Eddie Hearn is a very well-known figure, a Matchroom Boxing director and the man responsible for promoting the likes of Antony Joshua, Oleksandr Usyk and Tony Bellew. 

However, in recent times he has transcended the sport, becoming an overnight viral sensation thanks to the @NoContextHearn parody Twitter account. 

The boxing promoter’s road to the top is a story of hard work, dedication and most recently, memes. 

Social Media Star

At the time of writing @NoContextHearn currently has 283,000 followers, a figure that is growing rapidly by the day. Considering the account has existed for just a matter of months, to be approaching almost 300,000 followers already is very impressive, however, it is not surprising given that the clips are widely shared on a daily basis. 

Hearn is widely seen as the face of Matchroom Boxing and as a result he commands significant attention from boxing media outlets worldwide. Fans are always keen to know the latest fight news, and since it his responsibility to drive up publicity around upcoming events, he can often be seen conducting interviews with broadcasters such as Sky Sports. 

The son of Barry Hearn, a pioneer within the sports promotion industry, Eddie has significant experience with the media and has become a natural behind the camera over the course of his career. The 40-year-old’s confidence and humour combined with the extensive press exposure he receives is a recipe for social media success. 

Clips of Hearn’s antics and impressions are often clipped and then uploaded, his unique catchphrases ‘quoted’ by thousands and applied to various stories and trends across the internet. A simple but effective formula. Although press conferences are a good opportunity for his personality to come across, the best @NoContextHearn content is produced in interviews with close friend Kugan Cassius. 

Cassius is the co-founder of iFL TV, an online source for boxing news which has amassed over 500 million YouTube views, and their close relationship allows the sports promoter to perform at his best as shown in several videos on the channel. 

Hearn discussed his rise to Twitter in a recent interview on the SecondsOut YouTube channel. He said: 

“It’s funny because Eddie Hearn is really unpopular and No Context Hearn is a legend. Unfortunately, the ‘real me’ is not particularly liked so I’m hoping that NoContextHearn and Eddie Hearn can sort of merge into one and I can take the popularity of that social media character and try and get a little bit of love. 

“Every interview I do, especially the iFL ones, that’s where they get like 95% of their footage. He’s pulling five or six a day [clips] from interviews going back five or six years and there’s so much content to come. That’s the worrying thing, they’re only just getting started.” 

As alluded to, Twitter fame can be very beneficial to a man who deals in the business of promoting and marketing, however you need more than just popularity to become one of the world’s most successful boxing promoters. 

Hearn’s Boxing Monopoly 

Those who have only recently become aware of Eddie Hearn through the parody account may not know about his great success as a businessman, it is important to acknowledge that he is much more than just a social media figure. 

He has promoted some of the biggest sporting events of recent years, perhaps most notably the 2017 fight between Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko at Wembley Stadium in front of 90,000 people. However, despite his father’s influence in the industry, Eddie has not had his career handed to him, instead he has been kept grounded by his father from a young age. 

After plying his trade in America for a period as part of a sports management company, Hearn eventually returned to the UK and started working for Matchroom. His earliest ventures for the company focused on marketing televised poker events before progressing to boxing, promoting his first world title fight at just 32 years of age. 

His ‘title’ describes him as Matchroom’s Group Managing Director, essentially the company’s public figurehead. Many credit Hearn for his role in revitalising British boxing, matchmaking events that have reignited the general public’s interest in a sport that was in danger of fading away, particularly due to the rise of the UFC. 

Matchroom and Sky Sports currently have an exclusive broadcast agreement that is scheduled to run until 2025 and last year Hearn announced the biggest deal in boxing history; a $1bn agreement with American streaming giant DAZN that will see his company stage 16 shows in the United States. Under his guidance, boxing is only heading in one direction. 

Next on the calendar was the highly publicised November 9 rematch between KSI and Logan Paul. Two of YouTube’s biggest names with a combined total of 40 million subscribers went head-to-head, with KSI leaving the ring as the victor.

The card also features WBC lightweight champion Devin Haney and WBO super middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders, with the main event in particular set to attract a significant online audience. Eddie Hearn is taking a step into fairly unknown territory as he explores the potential of ‘YouTube Boxing’, a decision that will likely see both his empire and social media presence continue to grow.

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